What is MERS?
Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) is a respiratory illness occurring almost exclusively in countries in the Arabian Peninsula (Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Oman, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Qatar, and Bahrain). According to the World Health Organization (WHO), almost 30% of those individuals who developed MERS have died from its complications. Recent reports of MERS occurring in the U.S. have generated a great deal of concern regarding its potential for spread in this country.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for 20 seconds, and help young children do the same. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Avoid personal contact, such as kissing, or sharing cups or eating utensils, with sick people.
- Avoid undercooked meats and make sure that the water you drink is sterilized.
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